We must trust the people to hear and see both the good and the bad and to choose the good

movie reels

Eleanor Roosevelt weighs on on creative freedom

OCTOBER 29, 1947

I have been one of those who have carried the fight for complete freedom of information in the United Nations. And while accepting the fact that some of our press, our radio commentators, our prominent citizens and our movies may at times be blamed legitimately for things they have said and done, still I feel that the fundamental right of freedom of thought and expression is essential. If you curtail what the other fellow says and does, you curtail what you yourself may say and do.

In our country we must trust the people to hear and see both the good and the bad and to choose the good. The Un-American Activities Committee seems to me to be better for a police state than for the USA.

by Eleanor Roosevelt (October 11, 1884 – November 7, 1962)
found in Courage in a Dangerous World
edited by Allida M. Black
image – biskuit

My Day

Six days a week, from December 31, 1935 through September 26 1962, Eleanor Roosevelt wrote “My Day,” her syndicated newspaper column. In all that time she only missed four days – all in mid April of 1945, the week of her husband’s death.

She spoke her mind with a friendly and informal grace that helped Americans feel like we knew her personally – or at least that Eleanor would care to know us personally. She checked in with us after seeing the movie made from Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath. She told us about her experience touring refugee camps after the Holocaust. In this particular column, she gives us a piece of her mind on The Un-American Activities Committee, as they go after purported Communist sympathizers in the movie industry, just weeks before the first organized Hollywood blacklist.

Eleanor Roosevelt wrote to America six days a week. Her husband the President spoke to us on the radio, with 30 “fireside chats” between 1933 and 1944. What commitment from both of them!

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One Response to “We must trust the people to hear and see both the good and the bad and to choose the good”

  1. Great quotes | New Visions Says:

    […] « We must trust the people to hear and see both the good and the bad and to choose the good […]

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